Iowa farmers face moisture dilemma at planting


Iowa farmers face moisture dilemma at planting

Some Iowa farmers faced a moisture dilemma this spring of whether to plant shallow or deep. 

Iowa State University Extension cropping systems specialist Mark Licht says the planting season has been dry and cool.

“As we got into the mid to latter part of the planting window, we started to think about do we need to shallow up the seed depth to take advantage of these quarter-inch rains? Or do we put that seed just a little bit deeper to get it into some good soil moisture?”

He tells Brownfield it’s a risky proposition either way.

“But quite honestly, what it does lead to is that we can have some issues with unevenness of emergence because of some of that risk that’s associated there.”

Licht encourages growers to scout fields as crops emerge to ensure adequate stand establishment.  He says that involves plant population, emergence uniformity, and plant spacing.